Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Fiction and Empire


I note that lead New Yorker literary critic James Wood has an essay in the new issue about a Hungarian novelist with an unreadable unpronouncable name. I won't try to remember it here. The question is why Wood thinks his readership would be interested in this author. The question is: Who is that readership?

There's no interest in the concept of "American" literature-- and why should there be, from the James Wood perspective? He's a British mercenary-for-hire, raised with an implicit British global view of the world which matches the view of the magazines he writes for. The New Yorker's view is not toward America, but Europe, first, then the rest of the world. The world belongs to them and their highly educated imperialistic readership. More than latter-day Brits, they are current-day Romans.

I've advocated literary rebellion from their rear, behind their backs, to rescue American literature from them. I still advocate that.


Anonymous said...


what about other magazines? Given what you're saying here, what would be the equivalent (ie "premier") truly American magazine to turn towards?

King Wenclas said...

There isn't any!

The Imperialists have wiped society clean of authentic American culture, anything hinting of it-- or at least tried to. (See the visceral hatred toward Sarah Palin.)

Someone needs to found an anti-New Yorker.

Btw, these questions have little to do with "Right" or "Left." Look at old copies of Ted Solotaroff's American Review and see how American-- focused on American themes and questions-- it appears now.